From David J. Eck’s Introduction to Programming Using Java, Version 5.0:
In Java, a single task is called a thread. The term “thread” refers to a “thread of control” or “thread of execution,” meaning a sequence of instructions that are executed one after another – the thread extends through time, connecting each instruction to the next. In a multithreaded program, there can be many threads of control, weaving through time in parallel and forming the complete fabric of the program. (Ok, enough with the metaphor, already!)
Reminds me why I managed to read through this book despite the fact that it is essentially a textbook.